Fakespot, an app that analyzes Amazon reviews to find out which ones are fake, is no longer available for iOS. Amazon has successfully persuaded Apple to remove it from the App Store after the company raised concerns that the application provides misleading information and creates potential security issues. The e-commerce giant has confirmed it Engadget that it reported Fakespot for investigation. One of the biggest concerns, Amazon told us, was that the newly designed app Fakespot, which was launched in June, “wraps” and injects code on the site.
“Wrapping” would, in theory, allow the app to collect data and endanger customers’ sensitive information, including credit card numbers. The e-commerce titan told us that it came in contact with Fakespot directly to solve the security considerations, and that the app developer did not act.
Amazon said in a statement:
“Amazon works hard to build a shopping experience that pleases customers, and a sales experience that gives brands and sellers the opportunity to build and expand the business. The app in question provides customers with misleading information about our sellers and their products, harms sellers̵7; business, and creates potential security risk. We appreciate Apple’s review of this app in line with the Appstore guidelines. “
Fakespot founder and CEO Saoud Khalifah has admitted CNBC that his company collects some user data, but he said that it does not sell information to third parties. Furthermore, he denies Amazon’s claim that the app poses a security risk. “We do not steal users’ information, we have never done so. They have shown zero evidence and Apple acted on this with zero evidence,” he told the publication. Apparently, Apple did not give the company sufficient warning before the app was taken down, and did not even give it a chance to fix any issues that the technology giant may have.
While Apple has not yet released a statement that will clarify why exactly Fakespot was pulled down, Amazon pointed out Engadget to two App Store policies, in particular. One of these guidelines states that an app that displays content from a third-party service must secure permission from that service. The other prohibits applications from displaying false information.
Back in early 2020, Amazon went for a new add-on that was used to track prices and discounts: Honey, a $ 4 billion PayPal acquisition. People using Honey saw a warning on Amazon’s website that said the expansion “tracks [their] private shopping behavior, collects data such as [their] order history and items stored, and can read or change any of [their] data on any website [they] visit.”
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